Master of Science in Geosciences with concentration in Hydrogeology

<p>I'm looking for some input on this degree. I have a BS in Biology and I work at my local health department doing permitting related to ground water. I'm paid decently well and enjoy the work but i'm looking to increase my potential pay and career options.</p>

<p>I'm considering Stony Brook University's Master of Science in Geosciences with concentration in Hydrogeology.</p>

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<p>Does this seem like a marketable degree? I know MS in Geology type degrees are considered one of the better science degrees for jobs but this degree's required coursework is almost exclusively related to ground water. Where would I be able to find jobs with this degree? The local water company seems to hire hydrogeologists but i'm not sure what the demand is. Is there work in the private sector for hydros? Would I be eligible for jobs in other branches in geology with some additional coursework? What kind of starting and end career salary could i expect?</p>

<p>TL;DR What kind of jobs and pay would this degree get me?</p>

<p>My academic background is Soil Science, not Geology, but I have worked with Hydrologists on a few projects. </p>

<p>I think your best source of answers for your questions is the department itself.</p>

<p>I know a couple folks who did what you are looking to do and are now employed with consulting companies.</p>

<p>Hydrology is a specialization within the field of Geology and requires strong backgrounds in Physics and Math. For admission into an MS program in Geology you will need to have taken lower division courses with labs in Physical and Historical Geology plus upper divion courses in Mineralolgy, Petrology and Sedimentation. </p>

<p>You will also need three semesters of Calculus for Math, Physical Science and Engineering majors plus a semester of Differential Equations. In Physics you need a minimum of the three semester lower division Calculus based sequence taken by Physical Science and Engineering majors.</p>

<p>Hydro is definitely one of the more marketable geology specializations, due to the demand in the environmental consulting field. It's also unusual in the geology field in that you are less limited in terms of places you can live - if you really love oil, the odds that you will end up in Houston are pretty high, but water quality problems happen all over. I like GlassDoor for salary information - it can also give you a feel for what types of jobs would be available to you: Hydrogeologist</a> Salary | Glassdoor</p>

<p>In terms of coursework you need going in, seconded on the math and physics requirements. You might be able to make up a couple of these in grad school, but you need to go in with most of these already complete. Geology is one of the graduate schools you can enter as a non-major, so I don't think you have to have mineralogy/petrology etc. under you belt to specialize in hydrology. I knew plenty of people in grad school who entered as chemists, oceanographers, physicists, or mathematicians. That being said, SOME background in geology would be helpful (sedimentology is a good suggestion if you're interested in hydro). Maybe take a few community college classes before you go, it might make your application stronger. </p>

<p>I wouldn't sweat the coursework requirements for your department though. Classes are really not the point of grad school - it is to gain experience doing research. Employers really don't care what your classes are in as long as you can prove that you are capable of legitimate scientific research.</p>